NTSB Identification: FTW96FA046.
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Accident occurred Friday, November 17, 1995 in CYPRESS, TX
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/17/1996
Aircraft: Maule M-5-210C, registration: N51593
Injuries: 1 Fatal.

NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

The pilot received three separate weather briefings of forecasted IFR conditions in the 6 hours prior to his departure. While flying in instrument meteorological conditions en route to Conroe, Texas, the pilot reported to Houston Approach Control that 'I lost my gyros.' No-gyro vectors were given to the pilot by Houston Approach Control in an attempt to align the airplane for an ILS approach to runway 8 at Houston Intercontinental Airport. The pilot lost control of the airplane and it impacted the ground. The weather conditions at David Wayne Hooks Municipal Airport, which is 10 nautical miles north east of the accident site, at 1850 CST were estimated ceiling 500 feet AGL overcast, visibility 1 mile with fog, temperature of 57 degrees, dew point of 56 degrees with, winds at 070 degrees at 6 knots, and an altimeter setting of 30.17 inches. Examination of the vacuum pump input shaft by NTSB metallurgist revealed that the shaft failed as a result of sudden stoppage of the vacuum pump.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:

The pilot's failure to maintain aircraft control while flying in instrument meteorological conditions. Factors were the weather, and the failure of the airplane's vacuum pump which rendered the attitude indicator and the directional gyro inoperative.

Full narrative available

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